Re: ABBR vs ACRONYM

Rob (wlkngowl@unix.asb.com)
Fri, 13 Feb 1998 23:27:51 -0500


Message-Id: <199802140433.XAA15427@unix.asb.com>
From: "Rob" <wlkngowl@unix.asb.com>
To: "Russell Steven Shawn O'Connor" <roconnor@wronski.math.uwaterloo.ca>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 1998 23:27:51 -0500
CC: www-html@w3.org
In-reply-to: <Pine.SOL.3.95q.980213192157.13671A-100000@wronski.math.uwaterloo.ca>
Subject: Re: ABBR vs ACRONYM

On 13 Feb 98, "Russell Steven Shawn O'Connor"  wrote:

> I'm a little unsure of when to use ABBR and when to use ACRONYM.  The
> specs weren't clear on this.  Maybe it was unclear to avoid controversy.

In an earlier draft of the HTML 4.0 specs, ACRONYM disappeared entirely, 
so I changed them all to ABBR with the eventual expectation that AuralCSS 
would allow for a spellout feature.

Since the distinction can often be vague, I prefer sticking with ABBR 
which (logically) includes acronyms, whereas some people bicker over what 
is or isn't an acronym. I think ACRONYM exists for legacy reasons.

And considering that Netscape 4.0 often coughs up on ABBR or ACRONYM,
and that MSIE doesn't yet support it, I've removed some of the markup in
"critical" places where the display gets messed up.

By the way, a while back (don't rememebr the list archive URL and I'm 
offline at the moment) I proposed a simple dictionary format that relied 
on description lists:

<HEAD>
 <LINK Rel="Dictionary" HREF="MyDictionary.html">

  [... blah blah blah ... ]

<BODY>
 <P>When publishing <ABBR IDREF=HTML>HTML</ABBR> documents...


and in MyDictionary.html:

<DL>
 <DT><ABBR ID=HTML TITLE="Hypertext Markup Language">HTML</ABBR>
 <DD>Hypertext Markup Language. Created in the early 1990s by 
  Brenners-Lee ...

[Pardon any typos in names etc....]


Rob

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